Chapter 10 Prosperity Gospel

Many Bible verses confirm the teaching of Prosperity Gospel (see some verses below). Indeed, they are so prevalent that one would have to be blind not to see them.

Don’t lay up treasures for yourselves on the earth, where moth and rust consume, and where thieves break through and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consume, and where thieves don’t break through and steal;” (Mt. 6:19-20)

It is clear that by taking advantage of good deals (not just deals but deals of faith) we can lay up a personal treasure in heaven where there are no bank robbers.

But it is less clear that you can use the riches of heavens here on Earth. This is like depositing money into a bank. You can lay something there and get more back than you put in.

And tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the age to come.” (Heb. 6:5)

So it is now clear that Mt. 6:19-20 is calling you to store your treasure in heaven instead of using a bank on the Earth.

No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other; or else he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You can’t serve both God and Mammon.” (Mt. 6:24)

To serve Mammon means attempting to get rich using the means of this world (a common commercial business not based on faith or worse, cheating) rather than faith, charity, and good deals. Your money is either stored in heaven by God or you belong to this world system (Mammon).

Therefore, I tell you, don’t be anxious for your life: what you will eat, or what you will drink; nor yet for your body, what you will wear. Isn’t life more than food, and the body more than clothing?” (Mt. 6:25)

Therefore don’t be anxious, saying, ‘What will we eat?’, ‘What will we drink?’ or, ‘With what will we be clothed?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first God’s Kingdom, and his righteousness; and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Mt. 6:31-33)

He said to his disciples, ‘Therefore I tell you, don’t be anxious for your life, what you will eat, nor yet for your body, what you will wear. Life is more than food, and the body is more than clothing.’(Luk. 12:22-23)

Our human logic is the exact opposite of the logic of Jesus. Human logic causes us to suppose that since our life is important we should be worried about what to eat and drink in order to preserve our life. But Jesus tells to concentrate on more important things through the faith and if we do so God will provide the less important but critical things (food, drink, clothes) that support our life. If we seek first God’s Kingdom and his righteousness, we will have “all these things” (food, drink, clothes).

Jesus answered her, ‘Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things,  but one thing is needed. Mary has chosen the good part, which will not be taken away from her.’” (Luk. 10:38-42)

Come to me, all you who labor and are heavily burdened, and I will give you rest… will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” (Mt. 11:28-30)

It may mean that Christ will give those who come to Him in prayer enough money to have rest and not work all the time.

It looks like capitalism is wrong. These who have money earn even more with little or no work, and these who don't have money earn less and less with greater difficulties. But rest assured that things even out in heaven.

For whoever has, to him will be given, and he will have abundance, but whoever doesn’t have, from him will be taken away even that which he has.” (Mt. 13:12)

For to everyone who has will be given, and he will have abundance, but from him who has not, even that which he has will be taken away.” (Mt. 25:29)

For whoever has, to him will more be given, and he who doesn’t have, from him will be taken away even that which he has.” (Mrk. 4:25)

whoever has, to him will be given; and whoever doesn’t have, from him will be taken away even that which he thinks he has.” (Luk. 8:18) “For I tell you that to everyone who has, will more be given; but from him who doesn’t have, even that which he has will be taken away from him.” (Luk. 19:26)

So despite all of the deficiencies of capitalism, we can hardly devise a better economic system, as this is God’s economic model in heaven. That being said, God calls us to strive for equality:

For this is not that others may be eased and you distressed, but for equality. Your abundance at this present time supplies their lack, that their abundance also may become a supply for your lack; that there may be equality. As it is written, ‘He who gathered much had nothing left over, and he who gathered little had no lack.’(2Cor. 8:13-15)

Again, the Kingdom of Heaven is like a treasure hidden in the field, which a man found, and hid. In his joy, he goes and sells all that he has, and buys that field.” (Mt. 13:44)

This probably means that we should invest all of our resources into a Christian ministry, selling all business investments which we may have.

Again, the Kingdom of Heaven is like a man who is a merchant seeking fine pearls, who having found one pearl of great price, he went and sold all that he had, and bought it.” (Mt. 13:45-46)

This means that in the Kingdom of Heaven when we find things which are exceedingly more important than other good things, we need to concentrate on that one particular task, abandoning all others.

For the Son of Man will come in the glory of his Father with his angels, and then he will render to everyone according to his deeds.” (Mt. 16:27)

Note that in the end we will receive according to our own deeds, not according to how much we donated to others (however a donation is also a deed).

Give, and it will be given to you…” (Luk. 6:38)

It is quite clear that if you give away money, then money will be given to you.

So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.” (Luk. 12:21)

I'd better translate “rich into God.” This means that our riches can be put into God just like they can be deposited into a bank.

Sell that which you have, and give gifts to the needy. Make for yourselves purses which don’t grow old, a treasure in the heavens that doesn’t fail, where no thief approaches, neither moth destroys.” (Luk. 12:33)

By giving gifts to the needy we store money in “God's bank” in heaven. Then we can request the money in the prayer back.

Jesus said to them, ‘… He who comes to me will not be hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty.’” (Jn. 6:35)

Jesus does not lie. Whoever has the proper faith will never be hungry or thirsty. The need will be met through money or some other way.

I am the door. If anyone enters in by me, he will be saved, and will go in and go out, and will find pasture.” (Jn. 10:9)

We know that whoever enters through Christ is saved, but he will also find “pasture” which apparently means material goods.

Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be healthy, even as your soul prospers.” (3Jn. 1:2)

So then, those who are of faith are blessed with the faithful Abraham.” (Gal. 3:9)

The word “blessed” translated literally means “rich.”

The following is weird:

people of corrupt minds and destitute of the truth, who suppose that godliness is a means of gain. Withdraw yourself from such.” (1Tim. 6:5)

Isn't godliness a means for community gain (not personal gain)? Did I misunderstand something?

    1. Was Jesus rich?

I do not agree with some preachers who claim that Jesus was a really rich person in the sense of this world.

Jesus said to him, ‘The foxes have holes, and the birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.’” (Mt. 8:20)

Jesus said to him, ‘The foxes have holes, and the birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.’(Luk. 9:58)

But surely He was not very poor for soon after his birth He received some treasures (so these became His property) (Mt. 2:11)

Opening their treasures, they offered to him gifts: gold, frankincense, and myrrh.

While these were great riches during Bible times, it seems there were times when there was not enough money available to meet their everyday needs. Because of this God needed to miraculously provide.

But, lest we cause them to stumble, go to the sea, and cast a hook, and take up the first fish that comes up. When you have opened its mouth, you will find a stater coin. Take that, and give it to them for me and you.” (Mt. 17:27)

    1. Other

Blessed are the poor by spirit, For theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.” (Mt. 5:3, modified translation)

This is about people who were filled by and controlled by the spirit so much that they didn't need money. This does not mean that you give away all of your money and begin to live in poverty, because that would amount to being poor by letter rather than by spirit and that is not what Jesus is referring to. From this verse we know that being blessed with money isn't obligatory, there are people who may efficiently live without it. However that verse can also be understood another way: “Blessed are the beggars of spirit.” That is, those who repeatedly ask God to give them more of his spirit.

Finally, God will pay us by the works we have done, not just by our donations to others.

Who ‘will pay back to everyone according to their works’” (Rom. 2:6)

each will receive his own reward according to his own labor.” (1Cor. 3:8)

I will give to each one of you according to your deeds” (Rev. 2:23)

Behold, I come quickly. My reward is with me, to repay to each man according to his work.” (Rev. 22:12)

For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil…” (1Tim. 6:10)

I conclude that if people were not so greedy they would have contact with aliens (who don't want to deal with people, for why would they want to be in contact with those who would destroy the heavenly economy by their greed) and this would help to wipe out all kinds of evil.

“And if a brother or sister is naked and in lack of daily food, and one of you tells them, ‘Go in peace, be warmed and filled;’ and yet you didn’t give them the things the body needs, what good is it?” (James 2:15-16)

But whoever has the world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and closes his heart of compassion against him, how does the love of God remain in him? My little children, let’s not love in word only, neither with the tongue only, but in deed and truth.” (1Jn. 3:17-18)

But some of us say “we will help your poverty by offering up a prayer.” No, not just a prayer, you should also be willing to give away your money.

Some preachers strive to use the blood of Christ as if it were something common, for common needs. It is precious and should be used sparingly:

But with precious blood, as of a lamb without spot, the blood of Christ.” (1Pet. 1:19)